Dell's Layoffs Not Expected to Affect Marketing, Company Says

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Dell Computer Corp.'s elimination of 3,000 to 4,000 regular full-time positions over the next two quarters will not have a negative impact on its marketing efforts, a spokesman said yesterday.

"We will continue to market our products as we always have," said Mike Maher, a spokesman for Round Rock, TX-based Dell. "We plan on putting more emphasis behind our service products that make up our enterprise class."

Maher said the enterprise class is where Dell made a lot of headway over the past year and is also where it stands to make the most profit.

The layoffs will affect all areas of the company, including marketing, sales and engineering, and will especially impact the management levels, Maher said. The layoffs will take place primarily in central Texas. The latest layoffs come on top of 1,700 others announced in February.

"There has been no announcement yet on which areas will be affected most," Maher said.

The company plans to consolidate areas in the sales, marketing and engineering divisions as well as other parts of the organization. It also will combine certain manufacturing functions, significantly limit hiring of new workers and require most U.S. salaried employees to take unpaid time off during the second quarter.

Dell said results for the first fiscal quarter, which ended Friday, would meet previous expectations of $8 billion in revenue and 17 cents in per-share earnings.

Full first-quarter results and comment on second-quarter expectations are due May 17.

Dell said it expects to take a one-time, pre-tax charge of $250 million to $350 million against its second-quarter earnings primarily related to job reductions and consolidation of facilities.

At the close of the market yesterday, Dell's stock was trading at $24.80, down 4.28 percent from the previous day's close.

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